5 in custody following Cary carjacking, violent robberies in Durham

NEW HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — Authorities are investigating a carjacking in Cary, three armed robberies in Durham, and a police pursuit that began in Durham and ended with a vehicle crash near New Hill Tuesday morning. Four people were arrested after the crash and a fifth is in custody after a search Tuesday morning.

According to Durham police, a carjacking occurred in a parking lot off of Arbor Way in Cary just before 1 a.m. In that incident, the suspects took cellphones, a purse, hit one of them victims with a gun and then stole their black SUV, according to Cary police. The stolen SUV is believed to have then been used in an armed robbery in the 1000 block of W. Main Street in Durham around 3 a.m. Police said that at least one person was robbed at that location.

Another armed robbery occurred at the intersection of Holloway Street and Park Avenue. Police had no other details on the incident.

Police are also investigating a shooting and attempted armed robbery in the 2500 block of Chapel Hill Road in Durham that they believe could be connected. A man was shot around 2:45 a.m. while riding his bike, police said. The victim told authorities that two men exited a black vehicle and attempted to rob him before shooting him. The victim was transported to the hospital with serious, possibly life-threatening injuries.

The police chase that ended in New Hill started near the intersection of Alston Avenue and the Durham Freeway, authorities said.

Police have not yet confirmed a connection between the crimes, but are investigating them to determine if there is one.

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Following the W. Main Street robbery, a pursuit began in Durham involving law enforcement and five suspects in a stolen black SUV. The chase began near Alston Avenue and the Durham Freeway and continued on to N.C. Highway 55.

The police chase ended when the driver of the stolen vehicle slammed into a tree on U.S. Route 1 at New Hill Holleman Road around 3:50 a.m. Four suspects were caught soon after the crash and have been transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. After 10 a.m., authorities reported they had captured a fifth person in near the Shearon Harris Nuclear Power Plant.

Marcus Cofield, 17, of Durham, Jarrien Smith, 18, of Durham, and three male juveniles were each charged with three counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon and three counts of conspiracy to commit robbery in connection with incidents.

Juvenile petitions have been filed on the three juveniles.

The three juveniles are ages 14, 15 and 15.

Smith is being held in the Durham County Jail under a $525,000 bond. Cofield is also being held in the Durham County Jail. He was given a $760,000 bond. Both suspects are due in court Wednesday.

More charges are expected.

Anyone with information is asked to call CrimeStoppers at (919) 683-1200. CrimeStoppers pays cash rewards for information leading to arrests in felony cases and callers never have to identify themselves.

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